Aw, November…harvesting crops, gathering leaves, and admiring the bounty. Depending on where you are as you read this, you might be harvesting and adoring a bounty of seashells!
No matter the meaning you give to fall, this time of year often invites warming our outsides with flannels, wool blankets, and crackling fires.
Fall also beckons warming our insides with hot soups and toasty libations, and quiet introspection, giving thanks, and expressing gratitude.
As the weather chills and summer’s colors fade into autumn hues, I’ve started harvesting and admiring my own bounty of blessings and miracles, deeply grateful with overflowing thanks.
Sowing Seeds of Gratitude
If you read my blog, you know that after years of dismissing a gratitude practice, I started a gratitude journal earlier in the summer.
You also know that I was resistant and tentative. I didn’t get how writing intentions in the morning and expressing gratitude in the evening was a worthwhile endeavor; it sounded a little “out there” to me.
However, trusting that it takes 21 days to create a habit, the same process I used when learning to meditate, I committed to a summer gratitude practice, more like an experiment, actually.
I purchased a guided gratitude journal that included morning and evening prompts; my overly distracted mind loved the structure!
Every morning, I wrote my intentions for the day…such as,
“Today, something amazingly awesome is going to happen to me.”
“Today, I will receive an abundance of love from someone unexpected.”
Some mornings, my intentions were more general; other days, I was much more specific, like, “Today, I will savor a freshly ground hot cup of coffee.”. . . lovingly brewed by you know who! 😉
The point is that I didn’t over-think my new morning ritual; I simply enjoyed creating the possibilities.
Going about my day, I would practice paying attention to my intentions, noticing, observing.
Then, every evening, I would reflect on my intentions while expressing gratitude…such as,
“I am grateful for my amazingly awesome walk in nature.”
“I am grateful for my body and its ability to do yoga.”
“Damn, that was a simply sublime cup of coffee. I am grateful!” 🙂
The first few weeks of gratitude journaling, I didn’t notice anything all that special, although it was fun to imagine the possibilities and feel a different vibration in my body.
I continued writing in my journal dutifully every morning and every evening, trusting…
Bounty of Gratitude
As the days unfolded, I began noticing miracles, blessings, and synchronicity that honestly, blew my mind.
I observed random acts with new fascination and curiosity.
I saw people, places, and things with fresh eyes, such as an injured bunny that graced our backyard one Sunday.
My thinking slowed and focused.
Life and living simply felt different.
Over time, I noticed that I was calmer, less anxious and scattered, more peaceful, and honestly, simply more grateful.
The 21 days have come and gone, as has summer, yet my daily gratitude experiment, now a practice, remains.
Today, I flipped back through my journal reviewing some of my entries; I smiled warmly at all I had received.
All because I set daily intentions on purpose to notice, observe, and see the miracles and blessings laid before me; all because I chose to express gratitude for each of them every night.
Because of a simple experiment, I had gathered a bounty of miracles and blessings to harvest with gratitude.
As William Blake accounts, “The thankful receive bears a plentiful harvest.”
So as the sun sets on fall and as winter approaches, what bounty of miracles and blessing are you harvesting with gratitude?
Sending you inspiration,